All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review


Protean Reality (feat. Chris Pitsiokos, Noah Punkt & Philipp Scholz): Protean Reality

Karl Ackermann By

Sign in to view read count
An increasing presence on the downtown NYC circuit, alto saxophonist Chris Pitsiokos has worked with a number of free jazz luminaries such as Joe Morris, Nate Wooley, Peter Evans and Paul Lytton. He and Tyshawn Sorey joined the promising bassist Brandon Lopez as the Undermine Trio for a number of recent NYC performances. What stands the twenty-something Pitsiokos apart as a saxophonist is his broad range of virtuoso-like skills whether playing in a lyrical or free mode. Both ends of the spectrum are on display with Protean Reality.

Equally diverse in portfolio is the young German bassist Noah Punkt. On the awa release with alto saxophonist Gustav Geißler or with the group called Random, one could grasp the scope of Punkt's versatile interests and highly adventurous spirit. Punkt has also played with drummer Tim Daisy, and Swiss saxophonist Tobias Pfister. German drummer Philipp Scholz has been working, mostly in-country, with a "new jazz" trio called Plot. It's worth noting that, like Pitsiokos, these two members of Protean Reality are still in the twenties, but all with impressive early credentials.

The three long pieces (averaging twenty minutes) on Protean Reality blur the line between free improvisation and hard driving bop. "Torturer's Horse" opens with Pitsiokos's honks and squeaks and his joined by a marching pattern from Scholz. Building in intensity, the piece finally descends into asylum-like madness of noise and instrumental angst. "Green Water" offers a similar vein but here, Punkt's bass becomes distinctly audible, albeit, briefly; these compositions are sax/drum concentrated. "Calmly On" goes about twelve minutes in before the music demonstrates a synergy with the placid title. The mood is short-lived, as the album closes at a frenetic pace.

For an artist of his age, Punkt has a few impressive recordings that can be found online with a bit of hunting. His involvement in—and on—Protean Reality is peripheral though in more chaotic passages, it's hard to tell where all the input is coming from. As a unit however, this trio is a furious force that can tone down to nuance and re-fire to frenzy at breakneck speed. This is not an album that can be categorized due to its experimental nature. Protean Reality radiate both noise and lyricism with equal dexterity (if not in equal doses) and each of these musicians are worth watching for down the road.

Track Listing: Torturer's Horse; Green Water; Calmly On.

Personnel: Chris Pitsiokos: alto saxophone; Noah Punkt: electric bass; Philipp Scholz: drums and percussion.

Title: Protean Reality | Year Released: 2016 | Record Label: Clean Feed Records


comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Protean Reality

Protean Reality

Clean Feed Records

Gordian Twine

Gordian Twine

New Atlantis Records


Related Articles

Read Ravensburg CD/LP/Track Review
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: March 17, 2018
Read Turbulence CD/LP/Track Review
by Tyran Grillo
Published: March 17, 2018
Read Black Swan CD/LP/Track Review
Black Swan
by Chris Mosey
Published: March 17, 2018
Read Both Sides Of The Sky CD/LP/Track Review
Both Sides Of The Sky
by Sacha O'Grady
Published: March 17, 2018
Read Beethoven – Missa Solemnis CD/LP/Track Review
Beethoven – Missa Solemnis
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: March 17, 2018
Read Miles Davis & John Coltrane - The Final Tour: The Bootleg Series, Vol. 6 CD/LP/Track Review
Miles Davis & John Coltrane - The Final Tour: The...
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: March 16, 2018
Read "Meeting My Shadow" CD/LP/Track Review Meeting My Shadow
by James Nadal
Published: July 22, 2017
Read "Get Up And Go" CD/LP/Track Review Get Up And Go
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 2, 2017
Read "Generations" CD/LP/Track Review Generations
by Jerome Wilson
Published: August 22, 2017
Read "Here Today" CD/LP/Track Review Here Today
by Tyran Grillo
Published: December 26, 2017
Read "Beloved" CD/LP/Track Review Beloved
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: October 10, 2017
Read "g a b b r o" CD/LP/Track Review g a b b r o
by Mark Corroto
Published: November 5, 2017